Did you know that November is National Career Development Month? In celebration, Emily and Carissa will be blogging about what you can do each year at NAU to prepare yourself for your career. Our first post focuses on first year students.

At Gateway Career Services, we believe that it is never too early to start thinking about your career. There are steps that you can take from your first day at NAU to put yourself on a path to success.

First, create an account on Jobs for Jacks, which is a great tool if you are looking for part time work. Jobs for Jacks will ask you to upload a resume. If you are unsure of how to develop a resume, check out our career services website or attend a resume workshop on campus. The Gateway Career Services Team is here to help – you can stop by Walk-In Career Advising to get your resume reviewed. This is also a great time to start following NAU’s career-related social media sites (Facebook and Twitter), where we provide career advice, post open job positions, promote career events, and more.

If you have decided on your major, great! Focus on your classes and earning a strong GPA. If you haven’t yet picked a major, or are unsure about your chosen major, that’s okay too. Take a wide variety of classes to explore different fields that you may be interested in, speak with your advisor, attend Degree Exploration Day, and explore online resources such as What Can I Do with This Major? that can help you to narrow your choices. You can also search job shadowing opportunities with career fields you are interested in.

Remember that part time jobs off and on campus are a great first step in developing key skills that are important to employers – such as team work, communication, and problem solving. You can also develop these skills through on campus activities…so get involved! In addition to helping you develop key skills, activities can help you to make friends and ease your transition to college life.

Use this first year to figure out what your strengths are, and how you can apply those to your studies, relationships, work, and other activities. Also be aware of what you post on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram; content that you post can live on in cyberspace even if you delete it. Many employers perform searches on prospective employees, so you want to be mindful of what they can see. A polished LinkedIn profile is a great way to positively use social media to impress prospective employers.

This is a great year to starting gaining experience and developing skills through a part-time job and extracurricular activities. Don’t be overwhelmed – Gateway Career Services is here to help!

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